Category Archives: UX

UX Links for the week ahead (Week 3)

Every week i will feature a few UX links to get you set for the coming week.

This week i’m posting: an idea for desktop browser loading bars that is borrowed from mobile browsers, an article by Robert Fabricant about scaling your UX strategy, a look at the psychology behind dashboards,  an interview with the UX Explorers at Ford and finally a good read about the intersection of UX, CX and corporate strategy. Enjoy!

  1. New UI Pattern : Website Loading Bars http://www.usabilitypost.com/2013/08/19/new-ui-pattern-website-loading-bars/
  2. Scaling your UX Strategy http://blogs.hbr.org/2013/01/scaling-your-ux-strategy/
  3. The Psychology Behind Information Dashbaords: http://uxmag.com/articles/the-psychology-behind-information-dashboards
  4. The UX Explorers at Ford: http://uxmag.com/articles/the-ux-explorers-at-ford
  5. The Intersection of UX, CX & Corporate Strategy http://connect.humanfactors.com/profiles/blogs/the-intersection-of-user-experience-customer-experience-and-corpo

An interaction that bugs me (Part 1)

There’s an interaction I perform at least once every couple of days. It annoys me how inconsistent the design and interactions are.

I’m talking about cash machines or ATMs.

I believe this is a global phoenomenon.

It’s incredible to think that in this day and age of such advanced technology and interaction procceses, the advancement of most cash machine interactions around the world, seem to have stood still.

One could assume a couple of factors have lead to the current state of affairs: • Each banks appears to have thier own individual approach and power
• There is not a global or even localised institution leading, testing and improving

As a result of this, users need to think and learn new interfaces. Thinking takes, and wastes time.

In Manila i havn’t found 2 bank machines that follow the same design patterns or flows. There are inconsistencies in flow, button layout and even terminology across different banks. Some banks even have differing interfaces between their own machines.

I like to think i’m very efficient at using cash machines, infact it annoys me when the people in front of me takes their time to withdraw money.

I have a mental note of approximately how much money i have in my account, so i dont need to do a balance inquiry before withdrawing. I have observed that lots of people don’t do the same, they need to check their balance before selecting how much to withdraw.

For starters, this begs the question, why on earth are these two interactions treated separetly? Why not display the available balance on the cash withdrawal screen as a visual reference?

It occured to me that maybe i’m strange, because i opt to use any machine that is available (regardless of charges incurred) rather than sticking to my own bank. I’m pretty sure i’m not the only one, but even if i was there is surely a much better way to design such a commonly used set of actions.

Do you experience this in the countries you live in?

Is there a way to standardise cash machine interactions?

Join the discussion on the friends of the intercation design foundation linkedin group

UX Links for the week ahead (Week 2)

Every week i will feature a few UX related links to get your set for the coming week.  This week i’m posting some best practises for creating cross platform mobile apps, a link to the design & thinking official trailer (which looks great), Richard Branson’s take on knowing when to give up on your idea, an interview with Victor Lombardi and a blog post about why responsive design won’t fix your content problem. Enjoy!

  1. Best practises – creating cross platform mobile apps: http://thenextweb.com/dd/2013/11/26/best-practices-building-cross-platform-mobile-apps/
  2. Design & thinking official trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uilcaXYnluU
  3. Knowing when to give up on your idea: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/230093
  4. Fail Fast, Fail Often: http://www.uxbooth.com/articles/fail-fast-fail-often-an-interview-with-victor-lombardi/
  5. Responsive Design won’t fix your content problem: http://alistapart.com/column/responsive-design-wont-fix-your-content-problem

A Beginner’s Guide to Heuristic Evaluation (Part 1)

Introduction

In this blog series we’ll explore how heuristic evaluation can help you improve your website through concrete scores and data visualizations. Before we actually teach and walk you through the process of evaluation, we first must learn how to:

  1. Create heuristics
  2. Score your findings
  3. Visualize your scores
  4. Create tasks.
Starting your first website evaluation can be a doozy

I remember starting my first usability audit in the office and I can tell you it was not a walk in the park. Usability best practices were not in my UX toolkit yet and not knowing whether was I right or wrong is the worst part. This is where I realized that a structured review methodology can be a crucial arsenal in your toolkit, especially for first timers. Keeping things formal, organized and consistent will make our evaluation faster and consistent in the future. Luckily there are loads of online resources today that we can use.

 

What is a heuristic evaluation?

A heuristic evaluation is a review methodology or discount usability method for a quick, Continue reading

UX Links for the week ahead (Week 1)

What better way is there to start a Monday morning, than with some world class UX Links.  I’ll be posting a handful every Monday morning, for your inspiration and enjoyment.

1. Smart Transitions in User Experience Design 

2. How Usability Testing Drastically Improved My Clients App

3. Will Future UI Designs Turn Us Into Cyborgs?

4. 4 Essential UX Rules Taught By Eye Tracking Research

5. How To Lower Your Bounce Rate

UX Malaysia Conference

Last weekend i was lucky enough to attend the very first UX Malaysia conference.  It’s the first UX conference i’d ever attended; it honestly felt so good to be around some many like minded people.  Hosted in the very impressive Microsoft office in the Petronas towers, the event was sold out.  There were talks from Bram Pitoyo, Jonathan Hirsch, Benjamin Humphrey, Hao Dinh, Mike Lai and Yu-Hsiu.

With UX beginning to take off in countries like Malaysia and the Philippines, it was reassuring to hear the international speakers raise points and arguments that the audience could relate to.  It seems the lone / rockstar UX guys in South East Asia, share similar frustrations in UX design, to the rest of the world. My overall take away from all of the thought provoking talks is:

UX is a not a step in the process; it is a culture that needs to be nurtured.  UX needs great forward thinking designers, who solve problems over and over again.

In Manila we’ve been selling UX short, for far too long. Continue reading

Foolproof Labs – Usability & UX Mentoring for Start-ups (Session 1)

Last saturday our friends at Curiosity invited us to give a workshop on usability to 2 local startups, ivolunteer and Dmap.  It was a pleasure to present and work with such passionate people who are working for 2 very worthy causes.

Ivolunteer aims to gather volunteers from all over the Philippines to help out others who are in need. Volunteers can choose the activities they want to participate in then sign up online.

Dmap is still in beta phase.  The concept is a web app where users can input locations of diagnosed dengue cases with the vision of being able to map outbreaks in areas.  This project really resonates with me as i have a young family, and have recently just recovered from dengue.

Initially the plan was to have a one day event where we would do live usability testing on their sites and then analyse the findings, but after several discussions we decided it would be more productive if we turned the 1 day workshop into a 4 session spanning over a 3 month period.  Here is the schedule we decided on:

  • Session 1 – Usability basics & Live Expert Review
  • Session 2 – Usability test of your products (1)
  • Session 3 – Usability test of your products (2)
  • Session 4 – Usability test of your products (3)

I started off the workshop by discussing basic usability topics so the teams had an appreciation and understand of what its all about, then workshop ended with a live expert review, performed by Christine Balatbat from Movent.

Many thanks to Curiosity for inviting Foolproof Labs to present, and to ivolunteer and dmap for attending. We’re looking forward to the next session where we will be testing the sites in the Foolproof Labs office!

presentation of the schedule for the workshop